End of the line

From Australian Doctor, 4 September 2008:
For some infertile couples, IVF can become a long and agonising process. Who decides when it is time to step off the conveyor belt and give up hope?

GIVING up on IVF is a little like turning off life support, says Dr Christine Read. The comparison may seem callous, but Dr Read, medical director at Family Planning NSW, has seen enough desperate women to know the anguish of this scenario.
“People invest so much in getting pregnant, [that] when they’re told they aren’t pregnant or [the pregnancy] lasts for a short time, then fails, it’s devastating,” she says.
It is three decades this year since the world’s first IVF baby was born, in England. Two years after that, Australia’s first IVF baby arrived, and the country’s assisted reproductive technology industry has not looked back. In 2005 alone, there were more than 8000 IVF success stories in Australia. However, amid the tens of thousands of happy couples, there are some for whom IVF does not deliver. Read more.

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